Attention: All PR and Communications Students! Get Ahead of your Competition Before you Graduate!

Just because you are still in college does not mean that you cannot build your resume. Some of the most important learning experiences happen when students are still in school and are given responsibility, or strive beyond what is expected by professors. PR Daily has recently discussed 10 different tips to help Public Relations students get ahead of their competition before they even graduate! Whether you are a senior, or a freshman just starting out, and regardless of major, these points can be very useful and can put you on the path to success!

1. Designate a homework schedule so that you can manage your time properly and keep up with readings. It is also very beneficial to follow PR-related blogs and websites, such as PR Daily. This will help you stay up-to-date with the current topics in your field.

2. Organization is key! When your books and papers are in a clutter, how are you to keep track of things and study? As mentioned in the article, personal planners or Google Calendar are a great way to stay organized.

3. Use disgression when it comes to social media. It is better to be safe than sorry when posting on social media- almost anything can be tracked down these days. The last thing you want to do is leave a digital trail that will harm your chances of landing a job post-graduation.

4. Take a break and network! Everyone needs a study break; a great way to utilize this time is to get involved with social media networking tools such as LinkedIn, Google+ hangouts and Twitter chats. Anything and anyone whom relate to your area of study can be useful!

5. Visit professors during office hours. Professors make themselves available to answer any questions you may have about course material, so definitely make use of it! A professor is more likely to positively remember a face that comes in to their office asking for help as opposed to a last-minute email the night before a test.

6. Join PRSSA or another major-related organization. Many campuses, including JMU, have a Public Relations Student Society of America chapter, or another organization that is applicable to your major and intended field of employment. These types of groups will help you network, gain experience in the field, and to become more involved on your campus!

7. Intern! With the cut-throat competition and suffering economy today, the more experience an individual has, the better they look in the eyes of the employer. If you are ever searching for a job or internship, please consider visiting the JMU Recruit-A-Duke website.

8. Build media awareness. With all of the resources we currently have access to, it is important, and valuable, to research bloggers, important personnel in that particular field, and read up or different organizations. The more you know, the more impressed an employer will be!

9. Start a blog. Everyone has something that they are interested in or passionate about, and blogging is a great way to express those thoughts and feelings. At the same time, you will be creating a portfolio for future employers and tuning your online voice.

10. Learn software. Again, the more you know, the better! Familiarize yourself with any and every tool that is applicable to your field; this will make you a more versatile and knowledgeable employee.

By: Melissa Peale
contact: pealeml@dukes.jmu.edu

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